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Winners of 2nd Annual IMB Innovation Awards announced
Apr '09
The moment of truth finally arrived on the evening of April 22, 2009. As part of a festive award ceremony at IMB 2009 - World of Textile Processing, the winners of the second annual IMB Innovation Awards were announced.

A five-person jury - consisting of representatives of the international trade press and of globally operating companies in the sector - had to make the difficult choice: from over 30 submitted innovations, they had to select the best of the best in three categories.

Besides the exhibitors and international research institutes, college students and young people with up to three years of work experience were also able to submit their innovations for the competition, which were judged in the new category of "Students & Young Professionals." The awards were sponsored by the European Commission, which was represented by the head of the "Industrial Technologies" Directorate of the Directorate-General for Research, Herbert von Bose.

In the category "Exhibitors," the first prize went to the French company Sarl Erbe Innovation for its "Intelligent linking machine." In its reasoning, the jury emphasized that the product will substantially simplify the complex process of linking. This also means that the training period of new employees using this production process will be drastically reduced in the future. Second place went to Lectra Deutschland GmbH for its New DesignConcept Auto and DesignConcept TechTex, and third place went to Dürkopp Adler AG for its twin-needle post bed machine for decorative seams on three-dimensionally shaped workpieces.

The first-prize winner in the category "Research & Development" was the Institute for Textile and Clothing Technology at the Technical University of Dresden for its Virtual Fit Simulation, a 3D simulation for seams and multi-layered textiles. The jury believes that the Virtual Fit Simulation has the potential to greatly improve production processes in the industry. Second place went to the Institute of Textiles and Clothing of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University for its Intelligent Real-time Decision Support System for Quick-response Apparel Production Planning and Control. And the third place was taken by the Faculty of Textile Technology (TTF) of the University of Zagreb with its Modular Microwave device for thermal treatments of flexible materials. The first prize in this category was endowed with €7,000, the second prize with €2,000, and the third prize with €1,000.

The first prize for the first "Students & Young Professionals" category was endowed with €3,000 and went to Anne Selby for her Compleat Arashi Shibori wrapping machine.

The wrapping machine impressed the jury because it is able to produce uniquely folded and dyed materials - a production process which currently is only possible if it's done manually and can in the future be automated through the use of a simple machine. The second prize winner was the Project Team from the Institute of Textiles and Clothing Technology's Mechanical Engineering department at the Technical University of Dresden, who received €2,000 for their preform for carbon-reinforced complex-shaped composite structures.

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